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September 8, 2011 Volume 2, Issue 33
Please share the Recovery to Practice (RTP) Weekly Highlights with your
colleagues, clients, friends, and family!

To access RTP's Weekly Highlights, quarterly e-newsletters, Webinar recordings,
and PowerPoint presentations,
please visit http://www.dsgonline.com/rtp/resources.html.

RTP Professional Disciplines Celebrate National Wellness Week:
September 19–25, 2011
To celebrate and spread the word about the first annual National Wellness Week, part of SAMHSA's National Recovery Month, the Recovery to Practice professional disciplines are planning activities and promoting awareness of wellness through various strategies. The theme of this inaugural event is "Living Wellness."

American Psychiatric Association (ApA)
  • Visitors to ApA's primary Web site, www.psych.org, and public education Web site, www.HealthyMinds.org, can learn about National Recovery Month and Wellness Week.
  • Key recovery and wellness resources are posted on the RTP page, including
    • Psychiatrists' essays and testimonials on recovery.
    • A wellness fact sheet (statistics on the physical health of individuals with mental illness).
    • List of recovery sessions to be held at the ApA Institute on Psychiatric Services meeting in October 2011.
  • The public education home page
    • Offers links to general prevention and recovery statistics (Quick Facts) and video PSA from SAMHSA.
    • Highlights National Wellness Week with a brief description and fact sheet on wellness.
  • ApA will highlight National Recovery Month and Wellness Week via Twitter and Facebook.
  • For more information about ApA's specific activities, email dcohen@psych.org.
American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA)
  • APNA's e-bulletin board and online forum, Member Bridge, will feature announcements.
  • The RTP resources page has many recovery resources, including
    • Announcements about National Recovery Month and Wellness Week, along with details on SAMHSA's efforts to promote wellness and increase life expectancies for people with mental health and substance use problems.
    • Special art and recovery initiatives compiled by Gayle Bluebird.
  • In recognition of National Recovery Month, APNA will feature the keynote address "An American Resurrection: A Journey of Trauma and Triumph" by Eric Arauz, originally presented at the 2010 APNA Annual Conference. They will offer this continuing education Webinar to APNA members at no cost throughout September and to the public for free September 19–26, 2011. For details, visit http://www.apna.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageID=4652.html.
  • For more information about APNA's specific activities, email dhobbs@apna.org.
American Psychological Association (APA)
  • Visitors to APA's Web site will learn about National Recovery Month and Wellness Week, and find a link to additional information on the SAMHSA Web site.
  • APA will send a wellness e-card to thousands of recipients.
  • APA will highlight National Recovery Month and Wellness Week in special Facebook and Twitter postings, as well as in an issue of In the Public Interest, its monthly online newsletter.
  • For more information about APA's specific activities, email baryan@apa.org.
Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)
  • CSWE will announce National Wellness Week on its home page, www.cswe.org.
  • CSWE's September 2011 issue of Focus (an e-newsletter for members) will highlight National Wellness Week.
  • One tweet posted each week in September will highlight National Recovery Month and Wellness Week, the Joint Resolution, and the eight dimensions of wellness.
  • The CSWE Web site promotes recovery sessions at the CSWE Annual Program Meeting in Atlanta and Joint Resolution.
  • For more information about CSWE's specific activities, email jholmes@cswe.org.
National Association of Peer Specialists (NAPS)
  • The NAPS newsletter will include announcements in its September 9, 2011 issue and highlight the eight dimensions of recovery.
  • The NAPS Web site will publicize how line dances* are being scheduled throughout the country, and encourage members to participate in local activities in support of SAMHSA's effort to promote wellness and increase life expectancies for people with mental health and substance use problems.
    • During NAPS' August 22–24, 2011 national conference, participants enjoyed enthusiastic line dancing. Photos will be posted on their Web site.
  • Steve Harrington, NAPS Executive Director, will promote National Wellness Week during his presentation at the Community Inclusion Institute in Philadelphia, Pa., September 19, 2011.
  • For more information about NAPS activities, email steveh@naops.org.
*Line dancing spans generations and cultures while creating solidarity through repetitive motion. At 10:10 a.m. and 10:10 p.m. on September 23, 2011, thousands of people throughout the country will get up and show their commitment to wellness by line dancing. SAMHSA will spread the word about this special event using promotional strategies (media, social media), partner channels, and ongoing communication with our target audiences. Many community organizations, including peer-run and faith-based groups, will further support the cause by hosting 10:10 Line Dance for Wellness parties. Set Your Watch for the 10:10 Line Dance for Wellness—10:10 a.m. or 10:10 p.m. on September 23!

To read the news release about Recovery Month, please visit http://www.samhsa.gov/newsroom/advisories/1106280601.aspx.

The RTP Resource Center Announces
Its Final Webinar in a Four-Step Series:
Step 4 in the Recovery-Oriented Care Continuum:
Thursday, October 6, 2011

3–4:30 p.m. ET

In the final Webinar of a series on the continuum of recovery-oriented care, we focus on a relatively new but important concept: an individual's "graduation" from formal services, which often involves a transition to less formal community-based supports.

At one time, the mental health field believed most people would not recover from serious mental illness. Their lifelong dependency on formal treatment was expected, as was their chronic and deteriorating course. People did recover (in large numbers), though their exit from care was unplanned, unpredictable, and often unaddressed at the system level.

As a result, routine outpatient services typically have no-show rates around 50 percent, and the average age of individuals receiving publicly funded mental health services is about 40. People have "voted with their feet" and left care despite our best efforts. But we now know one of the reasons for this exodus: many individuals learn to manage their condition and want to return to their lives.

If people can recover from or learn to cope with serious mental illnesses, how can mental health professionals plan for this transition from the very beginning of treatment? Please join us and our presenters, Antonio Lambert, CPS, RTP Specialist for the National Association of Peer Specialists, Wes Sowers, MD, Director of the Center for Public Service Psychiatry at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, and Lauren Spiro, Director of the National Coalition for Mental Health Recovery, to discuss how we can help people graduate from care when it may no longer be needed. We will address options and alternatives for individuals who wish to move on from formal services and—more importantly—how we can help ensure that those who have optimally benefited from treatment have a meaningful life to return to.

To Register

Please share this announcement with friends and colleagues who may be interested in learning more about recovery-oriented practice in behavioral health services. For more information on SAMHSA's Recovery to Practice project, please contact the RTP Technical Assistance Center at recoverytopractice@dsgonline.com or 877.584.8535.

Demystifying Trauma:
Sharing Pathways to Healing and Wellness
Monday, September 26, 2011

3–4:30 p.m. ET


Richard Mollica, MD, MAR, Director of the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School
Beth Filson, MFA, CPS, Trainer and Curriculum Developer in Trauma-Informed Peer Support and Peer Workforce
Elizabeth Hudson, MSW, LCSW, Trauma Services Coordinator, University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Medicine and Public Health, with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Relevant for
  • Individuals and families who have experienced trauma
  • People in recovery from mental health, substance use, and trauma-related challenges
  • Peer-run organizations
  • Behavioral health providers
  • Primary care providers
  • Staff of State and county mental health or behavioral health departments
  • Staff and volunteers for faith-based and community-based organizations that support individuals and families recovering from trauma
  • Community members interested in supporting others following a traumatic event
You will learn how to
  • Understand the value of sharing one's story following a traumatic experience or event from an "evidence-based" perspective.
  • Explain how relationships strengthen and transform trauma survivors, and describe specific ways to build peer relationships based on mutual needs.
  • Apply new techniques in the role of listener that support the notion of "person as teacher."
  • Describe the values of trauma-informed care and put them into practice across many systems and social services.
During this 90-minute Webinar, you will discover how traumatic experiences and their impact are nearly universal, and how broadly they can affect the mind, body, spirit, and relationships. Healing from these experiences, however, is unique to the individual. You will grasp the power of the "personal story" in recovery from trauma, recognize the value of the "person as teacher," and understand the importance of being an active listener.

Relationships, especially peer support, can be a source of strength and transformation after trauma. Find out how to build peer relationships based on mutual needs. Develop techniques for listening in a supportive and compassionate way that also allows listeners to cope with emotional responses triggered by painful stories.

Communities throughout the country are infusing the values of trauma-informed care into mental health and substance abuse services, peer-run organizations and communities, child welfare settings, schools, homeless shelters, and correctional facilities. Learn how Wisconsin has embraced these values statewide, engaging consumer leadership and diverse stakeholders across many social systems and services. Through their example, you will understand that trauma-informed care is neither a prescriptive nor dogmatic approach, but a process of continuous innovation that best meets and responds to needs evolving from a community's culture. The strategies discussed during this Webinar will help you implement similar trauma-informed approaches in your community.

To Register*

*Please note: Registration closes September 25, 2011, at 5 p.m. ET.

Training Sponsor
This teleconference is sponsored by the SAMHSA ADS (Acceptance, Dignity and Social Inclusion Associated with Mental Health) Center, a project of the Center for Mental Health Services within SAMHSA.

Please explore the SAMHSA ADS Center Web site for more information at http://www.promoteacceptance.samhsa.gov.

Resources Highlighted in RECOVERe-works
September 2011
Mental Illnesses Mistaken for Medical Conditions
An August article in The Wall Street Journal Online highlights the prevalence of psychological symptoms attributed to medical conditions. In "Confusing Medical Ailments with Mental Illness," Harvard psychiatrist Barbara Schildkrout says more than 100 medical illnesses can be masked as mental health disorders. According to the article, "untangling cause and effect can challenge even seasoned clinicians, and the potential for missed diagnoses is growing."

Read the story, which includes warning signs for problems that seem behavioral, but may be medical:

Reducing Stigma Associated with Mental Health in Black Communities
According to a recent article in Behavioral Healthcare, statistics indicate that only one in three African Americans who need mental health care actually receive it, due to significant barriers in black communities such as racism, institutional mistrust, and lack of insurance. A new Web site, BlackMentalHealthNet.com, has been designed to empower the black community by promoting mental health and creating a private space for individuals to obtain information and resources. "Stigma often stifles the conversation regarding mental illness in the black community," says Harvard-trained psychiatrist Sarah Y. Vinson, the site's founder and chief editor. "Families too often base decisions on little information or misinformation. We hope to change that by providing facts and facilitating dialogue around mental illness in an environment of relative anonymity and acceptance."

RECOVERe-works is an electronic circular of The Coalition of Behavioral Health Agencies' Center for Rehabilitation and Recovery. To subscribe, please email oifa@azdhs.gov with "Subscribe to Recovery WORKS" in the subject line.

The RTP Resource Center Wants to Hear From
Recovery-Oriented Practitioners!
We invite practitioners to submit personal stories that describe how they became involved in recovery-oriented
work and how it has changed the way they practice.
The RTP Resource Center Wants to Hear From You, Too!
We invite you to submit personal stories that describe recovery experiences. To submit stories or other
recovery resources, please contact Stephanie Bernstein, MSW, at 877.584.8535,
or email recoverytopractice@dsgonline.com.

We welcome your views, comments, suggestions, and inquiries.
For more information on this topic or any other recovery topics,
please contact the RTP Resource Center at
877.584.8535, or email recoverytopractice@dsgonline.com.

The views, opinions, and content of this Weekly Highlight are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect
the views, opinions, or policies of SAMHSA or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.